Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Monday raked up the issue of terrorism to attack BJP, saying nearly 22,000 people died due to the menace during the NDA regime, while there were only 800 such deaths in the UPA's last five-year tenure.
"During the NDA government's tenure, nearly 22,000 people died due to terrorism. One of their ministers went to Kandahar to plead with terrorists for the release hostages (of a hijacked Indian Airlines plane)," said Rahul Gandhi while addressing a rally here in support of party candidate Coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal on the last day of campaigning.
"While during the past five years of UPA rule, only 800 people have died due to terrorism," he said. "This is the difference between them and us. Apart from
trying to finish terrorism, we also talk about development.
But they only talk about pitting Hindus against Muslims," he said.
Mocking the Narendra Modi's Gujarat model of development, Gandhi termed it a "toffee model".
"In Gujarat, not the common man, but only industrialists close to the government have got benefits. Modi gave Adani 45,000 acres at the rate of Re 1 per metre. Adani was also given crores of rupees and electricity contract.
"Similarly, the government has given loan to the Tatas at cheaper rates. Lands of poor farmers are being given to industrialists. Small industries like the ones dealing in textile and diamond-cutting are getting destroyed, but the government is not bothered.
"This is the difference between Modi and us. He only thinks about industrialists, but we think about the entire nation. While Modi helped industrialists, the UPA government invested Rs 30,000 crore in MNREGA and gave employment to crores of poors," Gandhi said.
"In Gujarat, 40 lakh people are below poverty line, 405 of the population do not get drinking water, 10 lakh youths are unemployed... and they are talking about implementing the Gujarat model in the country," he said.
"BJP talks about 'India Shining'. For them, India is shining and it is because of them. But I think, development has taken place in the country because of the poor workers, farmers, youths, service-class people and policemen," he said.
The Congress vice president also hit out at SP, saying the party did not implement the Right to Food Act in Uttar Pradesh as it feared that its credit would go to Congress during elections.
Gandhi also raked up local issues like defunct textile and leather industries, saying if elected, Jaiswal would work for their reopening.